McPherson Quality Painting and Water Proofing

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PROBLEMS & SOLUTIONS

SURFACTANT LEACHING

PROBLEM

Surfactant leaching causes blotchy, sometimes glossy, tan or brownish spots to appear on the surface of latex paints.

Surfactants are necessary in making paint. They evaporate and are not part of the paint film, their appearance does not harm it in any way. In most cases, the leaching occurs slowly and is washed away by weathering before even being noticed.

Possible causes:

Painting in cool, humid conditions or just before it occurs, such as late afternoon or just before or right after rain. The longer drying times allows the paints water-soluble ingredients-which would normally evaporate, or be leached out by rain or dew - to rise to the surface before the paint thoroughly dries.

Mist, dew or other moisture drying on the painted surface shortly after it has dried.

SOLUTION
Prevention tips:

Do not paint if temperatures are below 50 or in the late afternoons if cool, damp conditions are expected in the evening or overnight.

If the surfactant leaching occurs in the first day or so after the paint is applied, the blotches or stains can usually be rinsed off with a strong stream of water from a garden hose. A month or so of weathering will remove even the more stubborn cases of leaching. Surfactant leaching should not affect the ultimate durability of the coating.


Surfactant leaching causes blotchy, sometimes glossy, tan or brownish spots to appear on the surface of latex paints.

 

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Tips for the "do it yourself" consumer:
Quality paint vs.ordinary paint
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Window painting made easy
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